Prime Minister John Howard yesterday launched a free DVD aimed at helping parents raise their young children.
The DVD entitled 'Raising Children' has been developed to explain some of the essential skills needed for new parents, including health, safety and nutrition.
Mr Howard said the DVD focused on "the absolutely irreplaceable values of providing a secure and loving environment for every child that is born into this world".
Co-Director of Charles Darwin University’s Graduate School for Health Practice, Professor Lesley Barclay, has been on the steering committee for the ground-breaking DVD and was in Sydney for yesterday’s launch.
Professor Barclay said that the compilation of information on the DVD was excellent because it enabled people in their own home and own time to find answers to their parenting questions.
“Many parents in contemporary society don't have the time to sit down with each other and learn about parenting. The information contained on the DVD is aimed at sharing experiences of parenting, not teaching parenting skills,” Professor Barclay said.
“The information doesn't deal with issues around being a remote parent in an Aboriginal community in the Northern Territory, although I’m hoping to receive Commonwealth funding to produce a similar kind of package that focuses on Aboriginal-specific issues.”
Professor Barclay said the idea for the DVD began with a dedicated website that has functioned for a year, and has since had more than two million hits with Australian parents using the material on the website to support them in their role.
The DVD will be distributed nationwide free of charge to the parents of every newborn child from October.